When it comes to lifting bed garden materials, there are plenty of options that could make anyone's head spin. When deciding how to build your garden from scratch, or how to add to an already established garden, you want to get into the planning process.The following content also has some reference value for raised garden beds.

In fact, there is no perfect material on the market. When you decide to create raised garden beds, you'll have to weigh your options against the conditions of your area and, more specifically, your garden. You can buy garden bed sets, but too many options can lead to confusion.

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That's why we've developed this article to help you organize your thoughts about which raised bed material is best for you and your situation. We will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each material and each based on regional and financial factors, as well as the difficulty of using these materials.

Steel bed

Metal-raised garden beds are made of different steel, sometimes sold in kits, and sometimes put together from reused corrugated steel. You can build high beds with inexpensive recycled steel, weathering steel, or powder-coated steel. Some are crafted for durability, while others are not so good.

Epic Gardening sells metal raised beds made by Birdie's, which are the best metal raised beds on the market. You can find Birdie's bed in our online store. But before you buy them, let's discuss their use in organic gardening.

Advantages of steel bed

Steel beds have thin sides and take up less space in your yard, garden or field. They don't take up as much space as a wooden bed. In particular, steel made from alloys is designed to be durable. While there has been a lot of talk about the dangers of high temperatures on steel feeder beds, this has not been an issue. Steel beds can withstand hot and cold conditions and do not experience significant temperature changes compared to other types of garden bed materials.

garden bed

You may decide that steel beds are not a good deal, or wonder if their longevity matches the price. However, the cost of wood often makes metal beds more affordable, and they last longer. Because of the coating, a good powder coated galvanized steel bed or weathering steel bed will last at least 20 years, while a wooden bed usually won't even last 15 years.

As for the actual cost, you may find some variation between distributors. In our store, coated aluminum-zinc beds and corten steel beds range in price from $120 to $300, depending on their size. They preserve garden soil well and can last for decades unless there is some chemical imbalance, such as high salinity of the soil or chemical contamination. This makes them one of the best materials for growing beds today.

Most steel beds (other than plain galvanized steel) come in a kit and are easy to build without power tools or the need to drill pilot holes. This is the case for all bird beds. Maintenance is also easy in bed! You have little to do to keep them, and they can be easily disassembled and shipped.

Disadvantages of steel bed

Galvanized steel beds that lack coating or treatment, like re-used storage tanks, will not last as long as other coated or heat-treated beds. They rust easily over time, which means storage tanks won't last as long as wooden beds. They are very cheap, but chemicals from the production process can leach into garden soil and end up in food crops.

A more acidic soil mix or one with more peat moss will erode these layers more quickly. So unless you're willing to replace them after less than a decade, it's better to use more sustainable materials. Building a bed out of reused galvanized steel can sometimes be a chore that may require more than one person to perform.

It is important to note that weathering steel beds can also deteriorate and stain the surface on which they are placed. However, this does not cause any harm to the surrounding environment and is not an irreversible stain. You can place weather-resistant steel flower POTS or beds on drainage pans or divert runoff from concrete surfaces.

Brick and concrete bed

Reused bricks, cinder blocks, concrete blocks, and concrete planters are all viable options as raised bed materials. You can lay the bricks in the proper way and have a high bed in no time. You can go a step further and glue the bed together with mortar or cement. There are even sets with wood paneling and concrete corners.

Advantages of brick, cinder block or concrete bed

Bricks and concrete blocks are easy to find. People get rid of them all the time on resale websites, and they're ubiquitous in big box stores. You can also easily design a raised bed of any size and shape you want. When it comes to modular building materials, you are using bricks and blocks with one of the lowest design difficulties.

garden bed

One really great thing about brick is that it's hardy, the best of all the materials we've mentioned here. It holds the most heat, especially if you use a good quality brick. Vintage bricks that are older tend to be made of stronger materials that can withstand longer periods of wind and rain. This means that when you choose bricks, you can use reusable materials.

Disadvantages of brick or cement blocks as raised garden beds

One of the main problems involved with cement and cinder blocks is that the concrete can be toxic. This means that concrete can not only leach into the soil around your front garden, it can also leach chemicals into food crops. Various concrete blocks are made with fly ash, an aggregate used in manufacturing. This aggregate contains heavy metals and other materials not suitable for growing food crops or plants in general.

Not only can they be toxic, but all the material in this part is so heavy that it might be difficult for a person to install it on their own. For those using devices to move around in their gardens, it may not even be an option due to the weight of each brick or cinder block.

Poor quality bricks crack easily in cold, wet conditions. The same goes for concrete, cinder blocks or cement materials. This problem hinders their ability to resist decay. While they don't rot like cedar or redwood, they may not last very long in some environments, which means all the hard work you've done could be for nothing in a few years.

Plastic and resin bed

Plastic and resin beds have become more common in home gardening in recent years. Both materials can be easily found in big box stores and online shopping sites. Some are in sets, some are in sets.

Benefits of plastic and resin beds

We've already mentioned the convenience factor of these types of beds. With modular and above-ground options, you can make planting much more convenient. For those who have trouble bending and reaching underground beds, there is the option of planting a garden on a raised bed above the soil line.

Besides, plastics and resins are the most durable materials. You don't need to replace or maintain your bed during the growing season.

The makers of these beds tend to understand the importance of human health and safety, so many plastic or resin beds on the market today are BPA-free and are made of polyethylene, which does not leech into the soil. Some manufacturers advertise that these beds can be recycled when you're done.

Plastic and resin traps

While you don't need to repair broken bed walls unless you're using specifically BPA-free materials, some upcycled and reused materials actually contain BPA. That means BPA has the potential to leach into the soil and the food you grow. Also, plastic may be advertised as recyclable, but the truth is that your city's recycling system is a resource.

garden bed

The other problem with plastic is that it's very durable, and it holds moisture well -- sometimes too well. So for plants that rely on constant drainage to thrive, plastic is not a place where they are likely to survive unless there are sufficiently large drainage holes.

Choosing garden bed materials involves considering a variety of factors, including durability, aesthetics, cost and availability. No matter what material you choose, regular maintenance and maintenance are required to ensure that your garden bed remains beautiful and healthy.

April 01, 2023

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